Local wedding photographer snaps free pics for stranded ferry passengers

Britt Jezak from Port Orchard found some inspiration during a crisis.

A couple in life jackets smile on the deck of the Walla Walla ferry that grounded into Bainbridge Island

Several passengers on the grounded ferry were dressed up for a Navy gala.

Photo by Britt Jezak

Picture this — you’re a professional photographer on your way to take snaps for a planned proposal at the Seattle Great Wheel. Suddenly, the ferry you’re on loses power and runs aground on Bainbridge Island. Everyone’s safe, but you’re going to miss your appointment. Total bummer, right?

Good thing you’ve got your camera and a little bit of “glass half full” energy.

Meet Britt Jezak, a Port Orchard-based wedding photographer who was on the incapacitated Walla Walla ferry on Saturday night. When she learned that all 596 passengers were going to be stuck for a few hours, she pulled out her camera and buoyed everyone’s spirit with a few clicks of the shutter.

What made you decide to take pics?

I looked at the people who were all dressed up for the Sub Ball [a gala for enlisted Navy personnel in Seattle]. I was like, ‘They spent so much time and effort and money getting ready, and now here they are realizing that they’re not gonna make it’ … I just really felt for them. Why don’t we make the most of the situation we’re in and just sprinkle some positivity, you know?

How did you arrange everything?

I got permission from the captain and started doing free photo shoots for anyone who wanted them. The photos were beautiful and professional — I mean, I’m doing full on editing for them like I would if they were wedding guests: removing acne, taking bird poop out of the ferry. It was so hysterically funny. I mean, I have never done a photo shoot in a life jacket.

Have you been in touch with the Great Wheel couple?

I followed up with them the next day, and I’m happy to report that she said yes. I would love to do a re-shoot for them if they would like that.

You can follow the rest of Britt’s story on Instagram.

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